Immunosuppressive Drug Coverage Legislation Introduced
Bipartisan legislation was introduced last month in both houses of Congress to improve the quality of life for people with kidney disease. Led by Senators Dick Durbin (D-IL) and Thad Cochran (R-MS) and U.S. Representatives Dave Camp (R-MI) and Ron Kind (D-WI), the Comprehensive Immunosuppressive Drug Coverage for Transplant Patients Act (S. 565 and HR 1458) would assist thousands of Americans under the age of 65 who are being cut off from Medicare payments for drug therapy after 36 months by extending coverage of immunosuppressive drugs for kidney transplant recipients.
This legislation is a major step towards accomplishing the goal of the National Kidney Foundation's END THE WAIT! initiative to find solutions to the organ shortage and eliminate the wait for kidney transplant within 10 years.
Join NKF's Take Action Network and alert your Representatives and Senators to extend coverage of these important drugs.
Cousins Who Couldn't Be Closer
Give up a kidney to keep her 29-year-old cousin alive? No problem. Give up Diet Dr. Pepper to prepare for the transplant surgery? Now that was a real sacrifice. Darlene Navarette found out at an annual New Year's Day family get together at her grandmother's house that her cousin Holly Miyagawa, needed a kidney transplant. Navarette offered hers on the spot. The successful transplant surgery was performed two months later in March of 2000.
"The surgery was a piece of cake," says Navarette, now 46. "But what nearly killed me was that I couldn't have caffeine for two weeks. I don't give up my Dr. Pepper for just anyone!" Miyagawa understood the gravity of Navarette's sacrifice and remains extraordinarily grateful for the gift. "I wish I had other kidneys to donate," Navarette says matter-of-factly. "I would do it again in a heartbeat."
A Short Walk Could Go a Long Way
A short stroll could end up going the extra mile towards the detection and prevention of a disease that affects more than 30 million Americans.
Hundreds will step up for Kidney Walks around the country this Spring to help raise awareness and funds to support those who already have chronic kidney disease and the millions more at risk.
Take the first lifesaving step and find an upcoming Walk near you.
"Baking Soda" Prevents Kidney
Damage from Intravenous Dye
The choice of which intravenous solution to use during tests with dye injected to visualize internal organs or the vascular system can make a difference as to whether or not kidney damage will occur.
According to a report in the April issue of the American Journal of Kidney Diseases, the official journal of the National Kidney Foundation, a mixture of water and sodium bicarbonate – the ingredient in baking soda – is safer than a low-salt solution called saline.
To read more click here.
Social Networks Assist Black Patients
in Getting Kidney Transplants
African-American patients with kidney failure are more likely to succeed in securing a donor and undergoing kidney transplantation if they have informational social support from their dialysis team and other mentors, according to research presented at the National Kidney Foundation 2009 Spring Clinical Meetings last month where over 2,200 physicians, nurses, social workers, dietitians and other industry experts gathered in Nashville, TN.
"Research overwhelmingly indicates that African Americans are less likely to successfully get kidney transplants, even allowing for differences in socioeconomic and insurance status, and patient preference," explained Teri Browne, PhD, from the University of South Carolina in Columbia.
NKF Recognizes International
Leaders in Kidney Disease
Four physician scientists hailing from Mexico, England and Canada were recognized at NKF's Spring Clinical Nephrology Meetings with the prestigious International Distinguished Medal. This award honors the achievement of those who have made significant contributions to the field of kidney disease and extended the goals of the National Kidney Foundation. NKF President Dr. Bryan Becker presented these medals to recognize the accomplishments of the recipients through their clinical work, roles in academia, scientific discoveries and volunteer work in organizations similar to the Foundation.
Simple Changes Make Favorite
Take-Out Food Kidney-Friendly
Most take-out food is convenient and tasty and the Kidney Kitchen is out to duplicate these qualities without packing on the pounds or pouring on the salt. With simple changes in preparation and ingredients, often a high-sodium, high-fat recipe can actually be turned into a healthful dish.
Take, for example, sesame chicken. This popular Chinese-American dish contains soy sauce, sugar, oil and deep-fried chicken. The dish is high in taste but also high in fat, calories and sodium. By substituting reduced sodium soy sauce for its regular counterpart, honey for sugar, and by grilling instead of deep frying, the Kidney Kitchen's Grilled Chicken Sesame recipe is kidney and taste bud-friendly.